Soft or sandy, sheltered seafloor environments
Eelgrass is a type of marine, flowering seagrass that exists in temperate zones around the world. It thrives in soft seafloor environments, typically in shallow bays and estuaries. In Channel Islands National Park, large eelgrass beds occur off of Anacapa, Santa Cruz, and Santa Rosa Islands. The eelgrass species along the southern California coast, including Channel Islands National Park, is a distinct species (Zostera pacifica) from the one commonly found in bays and estuaries along most of the west coast (Zostera marina). The Channel Islands variety is unique in that it has broader leaves and does not usually occur in bays.